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Manufacturer: Evoluent
Min OS X: Any Version    Requires: USB Port

VerticalMouse 2
April 22, 2005 | Scott Turner

Ergonomic Gaming
The VerticalMouse was very responsive in all the games I played. With a 1000 DPI resolution (so says the product's box, although Evoluent's website claims 1200) there was no inaccuracy I could detect, and the cursor never jumped from a misread of my wood-grain mousing surface. I had to tone down the mouse's sensitivity a little to keep the tracking at a reasonable speed, which means gamers who love sensitivity will find this mouse satisfying. The thumb button was quite useful for a quick-access button such as firing a secondary weapon or zooming a weapon's scope in a game, and the third button on the mouse's side reminded me of the old 3-button ADB mice, with their large, easy-to-click surfaces and satisfying depression sounds. Sometimes I would accidentally press the mouse wheel on my way to the bottom button on the mouse's side, but this was an infrequent occurrence.

While the "sideways" style of holding the mouse takes a short time to get used to, the placement of the mouse's laser takes a bit longer. Much like the PistolMouse I also reviewed, the VerticalMouse's sensor is positioned slightly towards the front of the unit, requiring your wrist to rotate left and right as well as pan the mouse back and forth, as is usually done. I was able to adjust to this new method of turning quickly, and before I knew it I was becoming well adjusted to my new VerticalMouse.

The only consistent problem I encountered was also the fault of my bodily functions. I am the sort of person who needs a towel in between gaming sessions, as my hands become covered in sweat. The Evoluent mouse, while usually easy to grip, proved quite slippery when in the most tense gaming situations. The horizontal hand posture compounded with a sweaty palm gave me the impression that my hand was going to slide off the mouse at any moment. This forced me to contort my hand up and on top of the mouse for better grip. While it may simply be a quirk of the way I held the mouse, this was not the most comfortable gaming position for me.

Pricey Comfort
Evoluent has obviously spent a lot of time researching a more comfortable general-use mouse, and then they followed through with a well built product. Unfortunately for the consumer, this mouse also comes with a relatively high price-tag for its feature set: $75 for a right-handed version, and a premium $105 for a left-handed version.

Overall, the mouse is solid. An innovative way to hold the mouse is complemented with practical button placement and quality materials. Many with wrist-strain will likely welcome a mouse that relieves their pain and yet is not track-ball based.

On the other hand, the Mac version has some drawbacks. No native software, a bit of a learning curve for the sensor's placement and slippery rubber might put some gamers off, including myself. What is likely to send most looking for another mouse is the high price tag, one which unfortunately makes an otherwise above-average mouse best left to those with ergonomic issues and who are willing to spend a lot to solve their strain problems.

• Comfortable for OS usage
• Durable, easy-to-click buttons

• Expensive (left handers especially)
• Some readjustment for FPS precision
• Slippery grip in games
• No Mac software

VerticalMouse 2
Manufacturer: Evoluent


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